The practice of taking some else's work or ideas and passing them off as one's own.
-DERIVATIVES: plagiarist noun, plagiaristic adjective
- ORIGIN: early 17th century; from Latin plagiarius 'kidnapper' (from plagium 'a kidnapping', from Greek plagion) +ism.¹
"plagiarism noun" The Oxford Dictionary of English (revised edition). Ed. Catherine Soanes and Angus Stevenson. Oxford University Press, 2005. Oxford Reference Online. Oxford University Press. Vanderbilt University. 12 March 2010
In this culture, we consider our words and ideas intellectual property: like a car or any other possession, we believe our words belong to us and cannot be used without giving credit.
Therefore, whenever you write a paper that requires research, you must tell your reader where you obtained any ideas or assertions that are not originally your own. Whether you quote directly or summarize the information, you must acknowledge your sources by citing them. In this way, you give that person credit for the work s/he has done.
Regardless of your intent, each of the following constitutes plagiarism:
Direct Plagiarism -- including a verbatim quotation without a proper citation
Paraphrasing without a citation...passing off the ideas of others as your own
The inclusion of graphics, tables, charts or web pages without proper acknowledgement
Double dipping -- turning in the same paper for more than one class
See the "Citing Your Sources" Tab for more information about how to credit your sources.
Some tips to help you avoid accidental plagiarism include:
Start your research early -- procrastination can lead to last minute stress & sloppy work
Keep notes or a bibliography of the sources you consult as you go -- it is easier than reconstructing it at the end.
Visit the Writing Studio for help on incorporating your evidence & sources into your paper.
If you're still not sure about what plagiarism is try one of the tutorials below.